The Story I Want To Forget

Posted by khmernews on July 23, 2007


“Please, don’t recall the Khmer Rouge regime,” said 51-year-old Aunt Rain Thea, who is living in Phum Buon, Kompong Luong commune, Krakor district, Pursat province. She said this while she encountered a reporter in Kompong Thom province. She said that amongst her ten family members, only two survived.

After being apologized for asking to describe what she didn’t want to, she said that during the Khmer Rouge regime her family were living in Ponley, where the Khmer Rouge called Sruk Dab, Kompong Chhnang province. Her family was Muslim and earned living by fishing. Around 1976, they were moved to live in Chheu Tom, Krakor, Pursat. At one time, since they didn’t get used to living in the place, her parents and her family decided to flee back to live along the river where they had lived and earned their living by fishing. However, while packing, her father, elder brother Ry, and younger brother Sann were brought to be killed by Khmer Rouge cadres who accused them of rebelling.  “What rebellion? We only wanted to go back to where we used to live.” Having seen all of this, her mother and her relatives as well as she were shaking like “baby mice”, but dared not to protest at all. In 1977, her sister Ly Ny and her sister’s husband Sa Den and their child, who were living in Chrang Chamreh, were killed because they had argued with ‘a’ mother-in-law. It wasn’t until after 1979 that she realised the death of her sister. Besides taken to be killed, her family members died of illnesses and hunger one after another. She said that during the [KR] regime she was a energetic “mobile team” member whom the “Angkar” appointed to work at various places. She didn’t often meet her family.

Aunt Rain Thea used to see mass marriages during the KR regime. “9 to 10 couples were married together,” she said, adding that they were assigned to swear to take their partner as their wife or husband and to build their future together. “They held each other’s hands, and that was all,” she said.

She described that after the collapse of the KR regime in 1979, in her family there are only two people surviving, she and her sister. After coming back from the KR regime, she felt like “having been born again”. However, she is still in great sadness for the loss of her parents and siblings.
“If my family members lived together, my life wouldn’t be so difficult,” she said. If the law allowed, she would dare close her eyes and slaughter those senior Khmer Rouge leaders due to her great suffering.

Concerning the Khmer Rouge trials, she thinks it is good and requests the court to have fair trials. For reparations, she said no one would compensate since everything was over. “I can’t forget the Khmer Rouge regime because it is the bitterest experience,” she said.

Informal Translation
-Extracted from Rasmei Kampuchea, vol.15, #4339, Wednesday, July 18, 2007.


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